To my friends: Thank you so much for coming out to Torch this past weekend! We had an absolute blast! Ben Trench Anderson on an opening set, loving the vibes mate! Ben has been a mainstay, prime time, DNB dj in ATL for quite a while. As part of our Torch crew, I relied on him this month to rock out an opening set which he did in fine fashion. I know it was fun for him to play some lighter, more liquidfunk vibes! Rachel Saejma, a recent transplant to ATL, but no stranger to Torch, smashed it next! Saejma last time around crushed it at the 3 year Torch anniversary and went right back in, on this set. I cannot wait to hear the recording on this!
Thomas B and I have been involved in the scene for quite some time and it was a real treat to have him play on his actual birthday. One of my favorite parts of Torch is being able to provide / highlight all this amazing local talent we have in ATL. Thomas showed us once again why his preparation and mixing skills are absolutely top notch! I know this was a very memorable birthday for him! Ricky Raw is known to most as a rapper, promoter and general “you are always going to have a great time with this dude”. I know him as all those things, but in addition, I know him as a DNB dj from years past. And he is a pretty damn good one! I really enjoyed his set and I am a big fan of Evol Intent tunes and also of Ragga jungle. Cheers mate!
Don Darko smashed it up with some old school jungle, which was a great cap to a fantastic night! Love his energy behind the decks and his very positive outlook on life! Im sure we will be seeing him again soon! Next up is Torch on 4/8 which happens to be.....my birthday! See ya next month!
Big turnout, big tunes and big vibes @ Torch this month! I pride myself on putting together a diverse line up of local dnb talent and this month was no exception! Big ups to Bob D, Silver, Johnny GoodTime, Ray Gutta and DJ/MC Arion Lee for smashing up the dance!
I really want to highlight all the folks coming out to our event. I means so much to me that you chose to come celebrate Drum & Bass music with us @ Torch! I feels like each month we have more and more new faces in Purgatory and I know that is is the core Torch attendees spreading the word. We can talk the event up, post on FB, update our website, share and reshare the flyer, which I don’t want to discount, but I really feel that people are telling their friends and inviting them to the show. We don’t have ticket sales to measure, but it just seems that I am seeing more and more of someone I know who comes out, surrounded by a few people I don’t know, all having a great time. Folks, it is just one of the best feelings for me personally and shared by all of the Torch crew, to see people enjoying Drum & Bass music in the club.
Bob D started off with some slamming neuro and harder DNB! He is an energetic fellow and it shows in his DJ sets! Big up Bob! Silver came up next and went right to work on displaying his veteran status as a DJ. One of my old school crew came up and was like “Silver playing dnb? He is sounding good!” If you have been around for a long time, then you might know Chris Silver as breaks DJ, however he has been on the dnb tip for a while and it was a pleasure to have him out. Johnny GoodTime came up next and smash the place with his usual broad spectrum of Drum & Bass. Synth driven, liquid, big bassline stompers....JGT (Zach) loves it all! It was fun getting on the mic for his set!
Ray Gutta and I had gotten together prior to Torch to work out the DJM 900 Nexus <> Traktor connection. It took some doing but we got it down and knew that we would be ready for Torch. I love DJ technology and also making sure that we have whatever we need for each DJ to play on what they want to play. I definitely think some “Gutta” jungle tunes were well received and the crowd was jamming out with Ray and Arion Lee on the mic.
After a quick phono booth change for Arion, he went from MC to DJ/MC Arion Lee and smashed it up proper. I have to say that it was a real treat to watch him control the decks and the mic all at the same time. It reminded me of when MC Kntrnl use to do that at the church and Arion slayed it proper!
See everyone next month on 3/11 for the next edition of TORCH!!!!
I had an absolute blast @ Torch this month! We got snowed out last week and were lucky enough to be able to re-schedule. Thanks as always to the whole team @ The Masquerade for working with us on that! I apologize for the “later-than-late” start on Friday. We did get cranking ASAP though and Zach (Johnny GoodTime) got us from 0 to 100 mph in record time! It has been a pleasure to watch Zach progress over the last year, from playing the soundcheck @ the last residents night, to starring as a resident this year. Timewarp VIP x Snarl was really clutch! Big up mate!
Next up we had a new tag match up with Logam and Trench mixing it up! Thomas & Ben did a fantastic job of keeping it high energy and the crowd was loving it. I think we will have to have those 2 go at another tag set again! I really wish we could have gotten it recorded!
Chris QuickTemper also keep the vibe going and the energy. Its always interesting to me to see Chris rinse it out, as I always think of him to play liquid. He has smashed every subgenre of dnb at Torch and this was one of my favorite sets from him!
Dave Moneyman and Steve Subconscious came through and dropped some serious amen / jungle business! It was a nice change of pace and just shows how flexible dnb can be. Steve dropped Future Cut’s “The Specialist” which I have always thought was an older Bad Company tune. It was huge and went off! Dave brought his signature style of dark dnb and it was well received by the torch crew! It was great to see him as I know he has been busy with a new baby at home!
Overall a successful night and I will see everyone on 2/19 for the next edition of Torch!
I think that was the best Torch we have ever done. I hope it does not come off as egotistical to say that “we have had a LOT of fantastic Torch shows”. We put together an all star line up and they absolutely delivered! We have a HUGE pool of local Atlanta Drum & Bass talent. Over the last 4.5 years, we have had no shortage of amazing local DNB djs to play our show!
I missed Kode’s set. My wife’s work Christmas party was the same night and thankfully, Chris Skylink brought down some equipment and Chris Grass ran the entire stage. It was an odd feeling to walk in and Torch was already going, lol! Big thanks to those guys for setup and Im sure Kode crushed it!
Jamie Sorted is “your favorite Dj’s -- favorite Dj”. Shout out to Armanni for that quote and its 100% true! Sorted has played Torch a number of times over the years and it is always a treat to have him behind the decks! He is the “go to” dj for DNB in ATL for every promoter / festival in ATL and very deservingly so!
Rich Pawn Shop made his return to Torch and to the decks and it was a SLAMMING session. My buddy “Drew from Torch” has been hounding me for more jump up and Pawn Shop delivered in fine style! Back in 2006 / 2007, Rich and Matt Gimpmode (R.I.P.) introduced me to the world of nu jump up with their passion and penchant for the genre. Honestly I had never really cared much about it but those guys brought the rukus with it and it made me a fan! Fantastic set from Pawn Shop and loved those original tunes!
Legion. Logam. CDJs. Guitar. It was one for the books. It was like a DNB rock concert! It was so much energy and everyone was recording videos of Hunter and Thomas forming a cohesive unit of turntable and live instrument. Purgatory is one of the best places to make a set like that happen. From the haunting intro of Legion & Logam’s - House of Cards with Logam strumming along on the guitar to the Bensley - Fandango (????? Remix) with Logam on full shred mode!
Kallan High Kalliber did exactly what I expected, she took that massive crowd after Legion & Logam’s set and held them right there! She locked in and crushed it till the lights came on. I am really excited to see her bringing the passion of youth to the ATL DNB game!
Originally from Philly and firmly planted in ATL, we are so lucky to have Armanni Reign! He is an absolute master at his craft! From my experiences with hosting and mc’ing, I knew we needed to take it up a notch for David and sort out a wireless mic. It really allows you, as the mc, to bring a different vibe to the show and AR absolutely took it to the next level! He can rapid fire, sing along, bring it conscious, and hype up any crowd! He is a 5 tool mc! 100% tenacious on the mic! (Hey Armanni, how about these sports references?) :)
Oh, and by the way, we are LOCKED IN for Purgatory for next year! See you on 1/22 @ The world famous MASQUERADE for the next edition of Torch!
Today we are speaking with Rich Allan aka “Pawn Shop” and formerly “Quad Control”. He has been involved with DNB and other EDM projects in MN & GA. We are going to pick his brain on his name change, production, promotion and his move to ATL.
Q: You are originally from Minnesota. What sort of DNB projects did you work on out there? When and why did you move to Atlanta?
A: I really didn't dabble much in the actual production aspect of Drum n Bass back then. When I did, I thought my music sucked, so I never finished any projects. In terms of projects for promotion, I mainly worked on a couple of weeklies (they were at the time). An old buddy of mine and I ran a night called 9th Circle, which was in a cool little basement setup in North Minneapolis. It featured multiple genres of music, but our main focus was Drum n Bass. I used to always try to collaborate with some of the bigger promoters so that we could feature DNB in the bigger clubs as well. Back then it was tough to ether afford the ability to throw a jungle show at a bigger establishment, or just impossible to sell the idea to them to begin with, but when we would have the support from the more "mainstream" promoters working alongside of us, it allowed us to have bigger shows from time to time. Just before leaving and coming here, I was apart of starting Konkrete Jungle Minneapolis with my homies Brace MC, and Easyrider (Paul), which they ran for years after I was gone. Outside of that I was more in to just digging, and getting my hands on promo's before anyone would, and of course the dubplates that NO ONE had around our area.(real actual acetate cuts of the tunes, not just some mp3)
I moved to Atlanta around spring of 2007, primarily to be closer to family.
Q: I know you have been involved in the promotion and production of many shows here in Atlanta. Of course the most notable was your ATL BASS WARS project. Tell us about the project, how it began, and why it came to an end. Are you planning to jump back in the promotion game?
A: Bass Wars was originally started because I have always been in to massive sound, regardless of the size of the venue. When I first moved here, I was really displeased with the lack of emphasis on sound in most of the clubs I would frequent. One night, when I lived in East Atlanta, I ran in to a friend of mine (Todd) and we randomly started talking about how it would be cool to just start a small night, at a small venue, and to bring in a big sound system. He so happened to have just become GM at a venue called Blue Frog, so eventually we talked a bit more and decided to give it a shot. Over the course of a few years it blew up, and the sound became louder as time went on, to the point that it would rattle bottles off of the wall, and get at least a few complaints from the surrounding neighborhood. It was great. Needless to say, as time progressed, so did the crowds, so I began dabbling with the idea of moving to a bigger venue.
Eventually an opportunity arose with being able to move to Quad in early 2012, which exploded in terms of crowds, and the talent we could eventually afford to host. A lot of the success can be attributed simply to good timing. I was able to be at the right place at the right time, as some would say "a perfect storm". Combining the increased popularity of Bass Wars, and the young, hungry, excited young promoters associated with Quad really allowed us to grow to a size I never expected in such a short period of time.
To make a long story short, a few hasty decisions, primarily derived from overconfidence lead to the demise, and the loss of motivation to continue on. In early 2013 during the time of attempting to find a new home for the event I was hit by a car, with two other friends of mine and it lead me down a path that I am still battling to this day. Physical issues that I have been working on climbing out of for almost 3 years, which of course leads to battling depression. Since the accident, I inherited a massive amount of social anxiety, which can be crippling. Coming out this December to play at Torch will be a big accomplishment for me.
I am steadily working my way out of the vortex of life's complications, but as many know, it takes time.
I've thought about possibly dabbling in a small DNB show here and there, but outside of that, I've set my sites on strictly DNB.
Q: I’ve always know you as “Quad Control” for your DJ sets and production. Why did you change to “Pawn Shop”?
A: Going back on the last statements, with battling physical and emotion pain from my accident, I felt that one aspect of beginning to move on was to become "reborn" as a producer, and a DJ. Although I had releases as Quad Control, I wasn't very well known outside of where I was from, and here in Atlanta.
I come from a time where DJ/Production names are given to you from close friends, either from their own idea, and or from conversation. Since knowing I wanted a new start, one evening during a conversation with my friend Armanni, we came up with Pawn Shop.
A Pawn Shop is where you go when you're broke, and need help, along with a place you can go to buy just about everything. From old music, to jackets, you can buy anything, at a good rate! Because Pawn Shops are so diverse, I felt the name suited my diversity when it comes to music, so I took the name.
Q: What sort of DNB do you like to spin? How about to produce?
A: I spin everything, as long as it kind of makes sense. My true love will never go away from Jump up. Nothing like long drawn out bass lines that make you look like you are 50 pieces of sour candy at once. Also, since I have such an appreciation for the MC culture within Drum n Bass, that style goes hand in hand with it.
Q: What equipment do you like to DJ on? What sort of gear / DAW are you using for producing?
A: I like to DJ on any setup, although for the last 6-7 years I've used CDJ's with Serato.
As far as production goes, I use Ableton, and have been for about 6-7 years. Before that I was on Reason. I like to keep it simple, with a little Oxy8 keyboard as far as gear. One day when I win the lottery I want to pick up a Virus.
Q: What are your thoughts on our Torch night?
A: I've always been a supporter of Torch. It's all family to me. If I hadn't been dealt with the issues mentioned before I would have been out more often, or at all for that matter. Anything that pushes the music that is closest to my heart is a winner to me, and that means you're WINNERS!
Q: I noticed that you are on a bit of a fitness kick. Any tips to share?
A: Yes, I have been. It started about a year ago. Kind of goes with my whole battling physical pain, and issues. I literally got sick of being in pain, and sick of being as fat as I was. I told myself, and my Doctor that I wanted to do what I could to come close to losing 100 pounds. It's a daily struggle, but I'm to the point where I am training to one day run a 10k. With all of that the physical pain still remains, but it sure helps with my mental well being.
Let's see... Tips. As cliché as this sounds, it's absolutely 100% true. You literally have to just get up, and not lollygag, and pussyfoot around and start walking every day, when you have time. Gradually work your way up from 1/2 a mile, to a mile and so on, until you can walk as far as you want without even thinking about it. Once that gets too easy, move in to jogging, and proceed with the same situation. Top that with counting your calories as much as you can, and it will lead to at least losing weight.
Q: When you are not in the studio or spending time with your family, what sort of hobbies do you have?
A: I like playing video games if I'm not working on music, or messing up my house with my son Donovan. My other hobby is of course walking/running. Can't really afford too many hobbies like sky diving at the moment, or racing cars like I used to. lul
Q: Tell us about your new mix and where we can check you out online / social media?
A: My new mix features 9 of my own tracks, and a few from some buddies of mine. Otherwise it also includes all of my favorite, newer dance floor bangers. I knew I had to at least show people what I play, and it isn't really much different from what I used to spin. Either which way, the biggest thing about the mix is, although I still play a lot of the same style I used to be known for, it includes a lot of my own original work, which in the past, never did. I am working very hard at becoming a better producer. Something I always put on the backburner when I was promoting, which I regret. Now that I am not promoting, it has allowed me to do what I should have from the get go, which is to grind in the studio, and to steadily become a better producer.
Anywho, you can hear my new mix called "Rise From the Ashes" on my sound cloud page
Mix Link: https://soundcloud.com/thepawnshop/pawn-shop-rise-from-the-ashes-mix
You can like me on the facebooks here: https://www.facebook.com/basspawnshop
I had a blast playing an all vinyl set this month @ Torch! Definitely one of the most favorite sets I've had! I had some slips but some good mixes as well. It was really fun buying records for the month from Discogs and Juno. I tracked down a release of Skynet's Nvision recordings, had to buy 3 copies until I got the tune I wanted, lol! I also bagged Sigma's "El Presidente" on vinyl and I am glad to have it in my collection. My absolute "tune of the year" for 2015 is Dimension's "Whip Slap". I had to buy it on record and play it out for this.
James Trulyfe started us off and I was impressed with his set. I expected him to play a lot of dark dnb but found he had a very well rounded set of many different styles of Drum & Bass. Well mixed and a great open to the night! Big up sir! Destin Silk Wolf was up after me and he also played a well rounded set of DNB. We both played Pendulum's "Still Grey" and that really made the night special for me. Only at an all vinyl night will you here some of those classics, multiple times. I got to chat with Destin for a while after his set about DNB, the scene and it was a lot of fun! Greg Osiris was a man on a mission! I expected an old school set with some classics. He brought the freaking PAIN, double drops, quick mixing and hyped up tunes! Definitely my favorite Osiris set ever! Jimmie & Jason aka Enkognito x Kost closed us out for the night. They played it perfect with a great blend of old and new mellow DNB / Jungle tunes. I really, really, really enjoyed it and got to do some dancing with my good pal, Derek. It was his first Torch and he loved it!
This was our 3rd edition of the all vinyl, all night and I think it is one of the highlights of the year! Stay tune for next month, big tings agwan!
We have made it to 50 shows! I aim to make it 100! Over our history, we have had so many great nights, sets, tunes, friendships, support and love....it really is overwhelming!
#Torch50 started off with our first ever dj mix contest winner, Dark Matter. Thomas and some of the crew had kicked around the idea of doing a mix contest. Trench is working on a Torch mixes series and we decided to do the contest to gather mixes for that project and give someone a chance to play a slot at Torch for the 50th show. Dark Matter had a well rounded mix and our judges, Trench, Thomas B & Chuck Skillz were impressed. Josh Dark Matter did not disappoint and started off with a bang for #Torch50!
I have been friends with Zach aka Johnny GoodTime for 20 years this year. It has been a lot of fun to watch him develop as a DJ and getting aquainted with playing out in clubs over the last year. It reminded me of watching my friends Heath (Funnetik) and Evan (Arkylic) learn how to mix, how to get bookings and smash the club! Zach has excelled in those areas as well. Even though we have been friends for a long time, I wanted him to still earn a spot in our residency and he definitely has! He CRUSHED it at our 4 year anniversay show and thats when I knew he had made it. For the #Torch50, we added him to the Torch crew residents and he came through with a smashing liquid set! I really enjoyed it and I know he put a ton of time into it! Big up brother!
For the last 17 years, it has been me and Thomas B in the trenches of the Atlanta DNB scene. I met Thomas through our mutal buddy Joe Kain. We have been best friends ever since. From going to shows, preforming together to the Torch project, Thomas B has always been there for me! Thomas has one speed when it comes to mixing and thats 100 mph! He constantly amazes me as a fan of his quick mixing, double dropping and great selection. We always try to get the drop on each other and he certainly did with that "Air Force One" > Rainbow (Original Sin Remix) mix. Big up TB!
Going to the Transit shows in ATL, you have to been a fan of Riot Squad! These guys use to crush it at the Mark and have a sigunature style of turntablism and dnb mixing. We decided to shoot for the stars for this show and have a complete second setup of dj equipment. Unfortantely we had some technical issues and I apologize for those running long. Simply Butta & Little Ron did get to mix, but that they really wanted to bring a big set on 3 decks and 2 mixers. We will get it worked out for them to come back and tear it up at Torch in the future.
Thanks to my old roomate, Heath (Funnetik) for introducing me to Evan (Akrylic)! Evan is a really nice guy and great friend! I've known him for the last 9 years and as I said earlier, it was alot of fun to watch him rise in the ranks of learning to DJ and playing out in ATL. One of his best features as a dj is riding out a mix! He can blend the basslines or let 2 tracks mix together for long period of time. He had all his skills on showcase @ Torch50, especially since he has not played out in close to 3 years! He gave me a ring a few months ago about wanting to get back into DJ'ing. Debate or no debate on controllers, but we were able to get him setup for $300! He picked up the Pioneer / Serato DDJ-S1 and that thing is SICK! Even to get the lower end CDJs, decent Pioneer mixer and a SL3 box, you are looking at around $2200. I am so happy that there is technology out there for people to DJ Drum & Bass and not have to take out a loan to obtain it. Big up Evan!
See you next month on 11/13 for our "ALL VINYL, ALL NIGHT" edition of Torch DNB!
Wikked times @ Torch tonight! It is amazing to see all the continued support for our show and I am so grateful to everyone for coming out! The SoundClash vibe was pretty thick and everyone seemed to dig it! Lunashift started us off with some ragga riddems and it definitely set the mood for the night! I loved the Marley remixes and Matt showcased great mixing and some tricked out effects!
We led into the production round and Slack Industries was up first. The original productions they played reminded Chuck and I of some of the older techstep biz and it sounded great! Noisy Drums was up next and played a ton of originals and releases from their dnb imprint. Our Torch crew was next and brought the rukus! That Logam Cover of "Vault" tho! The vibe was 100 mph all night! Big thanks to Brian, Jason and Steve for repp'ing during the production round!
In the DJ skills round, Slack Industries came out the gate with a good mix of classic tunes, ragga and dancefloor jump up. One of the big tunes of the night was "Alien Girl"! It was a well placed classic! Noisy Drums came through with a set of flawless mixing that was super clean! Great blending, levels and track selection! Nice work on the x-pad as well! The Torch crew flexed good mixing with effects showcased as well. Loop tricks and stutter chops were on time and put on a good show for our home team! Big up to Peyton, Rob, Jason, & Chris for representing during the dj skills round!
The Champion tag set was a unique experience for each dj involved. Meeting someone for the first time and immediately being throw to the fire in a tag set would rattle many a dj, but these guys crushed it! Whipslap of course was one of my favorites and double drops, quick mixing and great tunes! Thanks to Ben, Matt and Ali for bringing there collective skills to the champion tag set!
Overall the soundclash was well received and we had a great turnout in support of each crew! Big thanks to Slack Industries for bring the pressure and to the Noisy Drums camp coming all the way down from NC to rinse it out with us! Great to mee all of you guys and gals! I really enjoyed the format and hope to bring another Soundclash to Torch next year! See everyone next month for the 50th edition of TORCH DNB!